Actual GG-1 top speed

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Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, March 2, 2017 10:10 AM

My one GG1 cab ride was with Noel, NH-Penn, and we did not do 100 mph on Metro North.   I assume he is retired, so I can admit to ridinjg with him.

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Posted by RME on Thursday, March 2, 2017 10:05 AM

I am looking forward to this thread becoming the PRR equivalent to what NDG is doing with String Lining.

Maybe if this catches on we can get Noel Weaver, Jack Neiss, and some others to contribute stories...

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Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, March 2, 2017 10:02 AM

Did you get to run the AEM-7s?  The Swedish Meatballs or Toasters?

Or the Metroliner MUs?

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Posted by rubberheels on Thursday, March 2, 2017 7:39 AM

I worked alot of times on GG-1's both freihgt and pass. I loved them on the TV24 &TV23 Potomac yd Va. to So. Kearny. I spent years on that train. I ran the Siver Meteor at 100 mph more than once. Sometimes 105 but thats about all you could get.Some G's were geared for 100 while some for 90.You had to have the right equip to do 100. then they came out with E60's They were JUNK!

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Posted by RME on Monday, February 20, 2017 4:35 PM

gmpullman
Loco-Valve-Pilot "speedometers" did indicate speeds of up to 120 MPH.

But T1s didn't have Valve Pilot.  (BTWdo you have a link to the un-cropped version of that picture?)

The only drawings I've ever seen are Jones-Motrola and they are calibrated for 100mph.  What we're trying to establish is whether, at any time, a T1 was given a recalibrated unit that displayed the higher speed, perhaps after rebuilding (such as the installation of type B Franklin valve gear). 

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Posted by gmpullman on Monday, February 20, 2017 11:17 AM

daveklepper
Some T-1s may have gotten 100mph speedometers, but there certainly were some with 120mph ones.

Loco-Valve-Pilot "speedometers" did indicate speeds of up to 120 MPH.

I do not have the information at hand to show what, if any, PRR locomotives were so equipped.

Regards, Ed

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Posted by RME on Sunday, February 19, 2017 5:14 PM

blue streak 1
An Upgraded (never happen too costly and all existing with frame cracks) GG-1 might do 160 but stability questions are many?

The 'updated' version of the very-high-speed GG1 project circa 1978 called, in part, for new welded underframes with chevron springing and lead trucks with minimized unsprung mass and three-axis damping.  If I remember correctly, they were designed for nominal 10% over (I think baseline 120mph, which would imply 132mph) but without any analysis of harmonic resonances at the higher speed range; neither good tools nor fast enough environments to run them were cost-effectively available then.

I considered it nominally possible to modify the underframes for 140mph operation, but quite a few further modifications would have been necessary, and you would still have had a relatively long and heavy locomotive that did not use all axles for adhesion.

While there was some discussion of having a "150mph Corridor" during the first rebuilding in the Carter administration, that wouldn't involve rebuilt GG1s for any particular time.  The high-speed versions were really only needed to bridge the gap left from the truck-mechanics failures of the GE E60s, not to provide a whole next generation of full Metroliner speed.

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Sunday, February 19, 2017 4:53 PM

ATSFGuy

Could the GG1's achieve 150mph?

 
No   --   some reasons.
Although AC traction motors were universal wound they were similar to today's DC traction motors that will flash over at too high of a speed.
As point out above the traction power CAT could not carry the power needed to move probably 2 GG-1s at 160 MPH.
The variable tension CAT was not even set for 150 MPH as PRR had no reson to set for that speed.
An Upgraded ( never happen too  costly and all existing with frame cracks ) GG-1 might do 160 but stability questions are many ?   
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Posted by RME on Sunday, February 19, 2017 3:48 PM

ATSFGuy
Could the GG1's achieve 150mph?

No.

If you modified the motors to spin that fast, and solved the issues with getting reliable current through them from the 11kV overhead down to the running rails, the suspension and lateral guiding were inadequate for anywhere near that speed.  If you fixed that, the braking was woefully inadequate -- inadequate, even, for repeated 110mph operation -- with any modern passenger-car consist capable of riding decently anywhere near that speed.

I do not have the actual results of the supposed 128mph testing at Claymont, which were done in part with 'instrumented' rail (somewhat primitive by modern standards) to measure lateral forces.  This has been brought up in the PRRCatenaryElectrics Yahoo group, as yet without any 'official' printed confirmation as far as I've seen.

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Posted by ATSFGuy on Sunday, February 19, 2017 12:17 PM

Could the GG1's achieve 150mph?

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Posted by K4s_PRR on Saturday, January 21, 2017 4:41 PM

Electroliner 1935
Sorry for being away so long, but yes you're right it should have read upper.  That comes from being an old man and too much imbibing.

 

 
K4s_PRR
K4s_PRR wrote the following post 3 hours ago: I remember in the early 50's looking out the lower half of a dutch door with the conductor.

 

I suspect that you meant the upper half as the lower half only opens when the upper half opens. The top half can open with the lower half closed. Lower half open would allow you to slide out and would be dangerous. 

 

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Posted by ndbprr on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 3:39 PM

As passenger traffic declined many G's were regeared to 80 mph top speed to make them more useful in freight service.  4800 was the only permanently assigned G in freight service.  I rode the Broadway from Chicago to Trenton about 1980 and asked the conducter how fast we were going. He said they were limited to 90 mph at that point.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 11:08 AM
Also the mist from flushed direct discharge johns, now of course past history
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Posted by ROBERT WILLISON on Sunday, January 8, 2017 1:48 PM

So buttoning up the Dutch door was a common safety practice as far back as the 50's. I know on steam excursions back in the 70's we had to wear Google's to protect against soot and ashes getting into your eyes. Makes sense on a passengers train at 80 mpg, the railroad would want doors closed to protect anyone from getting hurt or your hat being sucked out the opening.

 

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Posted by Dr D on Sunday, January 8, 2017 12:57 PM

Ridding the vestibule -

I guess I have spent much of my train riding career as a passenger gazing out the speeding train with the "dutch door" open.

Starting as a child in the 1960's - I accompanied my grandparents on a trip from Detroit to Erie, PA to attend my great grand uncle and aunt's 60th wedding anniversary! 

Departing on the Baltimore & Ohio the train condutor was stern even to my grandfather who had spent his lifetime riding the trains - a clergyman, he was born in 1876. 

In Toledo, Ohio at the new Toledo Union Terminal we transfered to the Water Level Route of the New York Central riding the grey lightening stripe diesels and velvet carpet ride of stainless steel coaches. 

 On the return trip my 9 year old sister, myself and a couple of other newly discovered kids wandering the train on that sleepy afternoon riding westward at speed - discovered the "dutch door."

What a joy to ride the train like the car with the window down - four kids packed in the vestibule opening with arms hanging out! - waving.  What a way to see Cleveland Union Terminal and half of the state of Ohio!  Until that Conductor walking the train came upon the fun - well "they don't allow passengers to ride the vestibule with the door open!"

Foolin with a Train Conductor in those days was not a happy experience - even for kids! 

-----------------

"Yes sir, they don't!" - not on that mans railroad!

- Doc

 

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Posted by oltmannd on Sunday, January 8, 2017 7:29 AM

https://www.flickr.com/gp/49398450@N04/95539h

When NS started running steam again, the first excursions were employee-only.  I decided to open a dutch door, got shooed away by a volunteer (a former employee, who I worked with, actually....) If it was safe for the crew, then why not  me?  (see picture)?  After that, I just picked my spots, but kept at it.  After all, if you can't hear it and smell it, why bother to ride behind steam?  

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by oldline1 on Saturday, January 7, 2017 2:06 PM

Growing up in Baltimore in the 1950's I had many rides from Baltimore to DC in the GG-1's tight cabs. After managing to squeeze though the B&P Tunnels and getting on better track I can remember engineers opening up to 90+ many times explaining they were the last chance to make up lost time. A GG-1 cab was always exciting to me but at speeds like that it was totally amazing especially passing other GG-1's oncoming. It seemsed they only had inches between them. Quite frightening! I certainly miss seeing them as much or more than steamers.

Roger Huber

Deer Creek Locomotive Works

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Posted by Firelock76 on Friday, November 25, 2016 9:05 AM

ROBERT WILLISON

Even ns won't  allow you to stand in the Dutch doors on their excursions. Insurance blah blah blah.

 

Different day and age brother, back in the pre-1994 excursion days it wasn't a problem, as long as you  didn't hog up the Dutch doors and gave other riders a chance.  Lady Firestorm and myself did it a number of times.  Quite a thrill, the speed, the wisps of smoke, and Lady F's arm around my waist.  Great days.  Steam trains are magic in more ways than one.

AND, I just remembered. The last time I rode the Dutch door I got a great view of an AT-6 (SNJ for you Navy and Marine Corps guys) WW2 training aircraft pacing and flying around the train!

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Posted by ROBERT WILLISON on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 4:25 PM

Even ns won't  allow you to stand in the Dutch doors on their excursions. Insurance blah blah blah.

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Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 4:22 PM

K4s_PRR
K4s_PRR wrote the following post 3 hours ago: I remember in the early 50's looking out the lower half of a dutch door with the conductor.

I suspect that you meant the upper half as the lower half only opens when the upper half opens. The top half can open with the lower half closed. Lower half open would allow you to slide out and would be dangerous. 

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Posted by JL Chicago on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 3:28 PM
Amtrak I don't think allows open Dutch doors anymore but a couple years ago I was on one of the private Pullman cars trailing the Saluki on a special excursion. There the Dutch doors were open. Wished the speed limit was still 100 on the ex IC line rather than today's 79! Tried to video from it but it was impossible to hold the camera steady!
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Posted by ROBERT WILLISON on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 2:53 PM

K4s_PRR

I remember in the early 50's looking out the lower half of a dutch door with the conductor.  He asked me if I knew how fast we were going, needless to say I didn't and he told me that we were cruzing at 90mph!  This of course impressed me greatly since I was still a young fellow.  From this experence I have no doubt that the GG-1 could go much faster if allowed.

 

nothing more fun then riding in the vestibule standing at the Dutch doors. Course back then you could clock the train speed by counting the time between mile post. Extra bonus.

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Posted by K4s_PRR on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 12:47 PM

I remember in the early 50's looking out the lower half of a dutch door with the conductor.  He asked me if I knew how fast we were going, needless to say I didn't and he told me that we were cruzing at 90mph!  This of course impressed me greatly since I was still a young fellow.  From this experence I have no doubt that the GG-1 could go much faster if allowed.

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Posted by rrlineman on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 8:28 PM

You had to been there to see it. a lot of sneaky hi-wheeling went on before the  Chase wreck with enginners and train crews.

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Posted by rrlineman on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 8:24 PM

Don't know, that is why the towerman at Perryville had us clear up. he was knocking down the signals like a banshee from Davis to the drawbridge. that is why the crew got pulled and Pappy Smith ended up with a 30 day unpaid vacation. Never heard of a freight going close to that except for the SUPER "C" the ATSF ran. Guess it was a big piece of luck.

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Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 9:04 AM

Paul Milenkovic

That sounds crazy.

A string of general-purpose freight cars with the 3-piece trucks going 105 MPH?  This must be well beyond their "critical speed."  How did nothing jump the track?

 

To get truck hunting going, you need tangent welded rail.  Curves and jointed rail will kill it.  Except for the welded rail laid in the late 60s for the Metroliner project, there was still lots of jointed rail on the NEC in the late 70s. Still, G's pulling a freight at 105 is a bit suspicious...

 

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by RME on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 9:03 AM

Paul Milenkovic
A string of general-purpose freight cars with the 3-piece trucks going 105 MPH? This must be well beyond their "critical speed." How did nothing jump the track?

I had the same argument when I first heard about the Super C.  And those fellows were using the train brakes a lot to get over the road (see the article, I believe in Classic Trains a few years ago, that was a firsthand discussion of handling that train).

The three-piece truck is remarkably compliant and steers well.  The great problem comes if there is any play in the fit between the bolster and sideframe, leading to resonant 'lozenging' (also sometimes called 'skew').  Some idea about counteracting this led to the various designs of truck with the little X-member keeping the sideframes aligned longitudinally while preserving the 'three-piece action' -- I still see these sideframes (with brackets) occasionally on container trains, but usually (so far in my experience, always) without the actual brace installed.  I do know they are still used in other countries, and would be a very prudent thing to have installed -- probably along with good, stiff constant-contact side bearings -- if operating a train at "105mph" with three-piece trucks were going to be considered.  But that story was from an earlier day and a more innocent time, when (returning to the T1 a moment) we have stories about crews running the engine so fast as to shake up people riding in passenger cars with nowhere near the truck sophistication (or state of maintenance) necessary.  I have little doubt the engineer in question could get the train to that speed ... but I also have little doubt he wasn't thinking too hard about the 'least maintained' car in his train, or the effect that the contemporary trackwork might have in exciting at least one truck into resonant lozenging (something that has to be seen to be believed... but from far, far away!)

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Posted by RME on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 8:49 AM

daveklepper
Somewhere, between 55 and 60 mph, several times I did notice a subtle back-and-forth oscillation, enough to be annoying when trying to read or sleep, but not anything suggesting danger. At the time, I put it down to lack of damping in the draftgear between loco and tender or tender and the first coach.

I believe E.T.Harley has commented on this effect in both T1s and Q2s, and of course it was dramatically manifested in at least one of the test-plant runs of the Q2.  The cause was attributed to transient 'phasing' of the two engines in sync, and potentially to a lesser extent momentum effects in the steam pipes.  It would probably be exacerbated by any slack, or improper tuning/damping, of the Franklin radial buffer.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 3:34 AM

rrlineman

when I was still a lineman, we were working the wiretrain south of Havre de Grace in 1980 or 81. just before Conrail killed thier electrics. the Road foreman and a boss from Washington were doing radar checks right at the south end of the Perryville draw. when we got a call from the P'Ville tower around 100 pm to stop work and get off the train and away from the tracks. before we could do that a frieght blew past use like we were not there. then we heard the Baltimore Power Director saying on the road channel the power was off #3 track. (we were on #1 track).from sub 16 to sub 17. We were told to pick up the bosses and take them south to the head end of the frieght. while we were moving our gang foreman ask what had happen and what was going on. seems they clocked MD-117 w/2 GG-1's and 60+ cars at 105 mph coming across the drawbridge. (speed limit on the bridge at the time was 65 mph for Pass, 45 for frieght. ) when we got to the headend, South of Oak interlocking, they pulled the Enginner P.A.(Pappy)Smith (62 Yrs old) out of service along with the fireman and conductor. When ask why he was going so fast Pappy replied he was late for date in DC. that stunt got him 30 days off without pay. and we spent the rest of the day inspecting the drawbridge for any wire damage. luckly nothing was found. also look up Reds Hallowell. He would break the century mark during late Metroliner testing with G's in order to set the schedule baseline.

 

Possibly if he had only done 80 they would have let him get away with it!

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Posted by BaltACD on Monday, November 21, 2016 8:34 PM

 

Paul Milenkovic
That sounds crazy.

A string of general-purpose freight cars with the 3-piece trucks going 105 MPH?  This must be well beyond their "critical speed."  How did nothing jump the track?

'Back in the Day' the B&O assigned their F3 passenger engines to the Chicago Division to operate between Chicago and Willard.  They retained their 98 MPH passenger gearing.  When 4 or 5 were placed on a 'TimeSaver' - they would click off the 120 miles from Pine Jct to Garrett in 80 to 90 minutes - averaging between 75 & 80 for the complete run.

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